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Airports rehab sked begins early 2020

Angelica Ballesteros

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Aboitiz InfraCapital Inc. is hoping to take over early next year the Laguindingan ang Panglao airports that it proposed for rehabilitation.

In a chance interview with reporters last week, Aboitiz Infra chief operating officer Cosette Canilao said the company is hopeful to take over the two projects in the “soonest possible time.”

Aboitiz Infra submitted last year unsolicited proposals to rehabilitate, upgrade, expand, operate, and maintain the Laguindingan airport in Misamis Oriental and the Panglao airport in Bohol. The company has already been granted original proponent status for the two projects.

Canilao said Aboitiz Infra hopes to secure before the end of the year the approval of the National Economic and Development Authority for the projects so that it could immediately take over them.

“There’s Swiss challenge first, so we have to go through that and then there’s further evaluation. So, actually we’re just preparing that if ever the whole process will be shortened, including the Swiss challenge, we have the organization to immediately take over.”

Canilao said the company, upon the order of the Department of Transportation, has patterned the proposal after the operations and maintenance template of the Clark International Airport.

Earlier in August, Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc. chief finance officer Manuel Lozano said the company would want the two airports to be needed over the next 10 to 20 years. They are seen to boost tourism in their respective provinces and neighboring cities.

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